Washington, D.C. (August 20, 2009) - The Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA), U.S. Department of Commerce, proudly announces the winner of the Ronald H. Brown Leadership Award for Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Week 2009. The recipient, Theresa Alvillar-Speake, will be honored at the Annual Awards Gala held August 28, 2009 from 7:00pm-10:00pm at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, D.C.
The Ronald H. Brown Leadership Award recognizes individuals who are willing to take risks to achieve change and who have demonstrated exceptional leadership by significantly enhancing the development of diversity in the domestic and worldwide economies.
The winner of MED Week 2009’s Ronald H. Brown Leadership Award is:
Theresea Alvillar-Speake has been involved in the area of small and minority business development since the late 1970s. She began her career at the Fresno, California region in 1972 as the Administrative Assistant at the National Economic Development Association (NEDA), a national non-profit organization responsible for promoting minority business development, and worked her way up the career ladder to Marketing Analyst and Director. In addition to starting her own non-profit organization, NEDA San Joaquin, Ms. Alvillar-Speake has received awards from numerous civic and professional organizations throughout her career.
Ms. Alvillar-Speake showed innovation by establishing the NEDA pilot “Minority Plan Room” which provides minority contractors with procurement opportunities and mechanisms to effectively identify projects, develop proposals and submit bids. She promoted diversity by opening doors for women, people of color, veterans, and small and minority businesses.
Ms. Alvillar-Speake is very involved in the community and MBDA. She also serves on more than 10 community organizations and groups.
Ms. Alvillar-Speake was appointed by President George W. Bush and confirmed by the U.S. Senate as Director of the Office of Minority Economic Impact and Diversity at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) in August of 2001. As the first Hispanic ever to head the office, she provided guidance and direction to the Secretary of Energy on the impact of energy policies, procedures and programs on minorities, minority institutions and minority businesses. During her tenure the department increased awards to minority firms to $1.4 billion in FY 2008. She received several awards for her leadership while at DOE.
Ms. Alvillar-Speake also served as the Associate Director for Program Development at MBDA and instituted policies and procedures designed to increase outreach to the minority business community.
To learn more about MED Week or to register, please visit www.medweek.gov 
About the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA)
MBDA (mbda.gov), U.S. Department of Commerce, serves minority entrepreneurs across America who are building and growing enterprises. MBDA helps minority-owned firms be better equipped to create jobs, impact local economies and competing successfully in domestic and global marketplaces. With a nationwide network of more than 40 business centers and strategic partners, MBDA assists minority entrepreneurs and business owners with consulting services, contract and financing opportunities, bonding and certification services, building business-to-business alliances and executive training.